Strong Enough...Dealing with the Storms in Life

Good Morning Everyone!

Jen, at It's a Wonderful Life, has a lovely blog.  I had started reading her blog because she was also pentecostal.  Quickly I realized that Jen was dealing with the grief of losing her only brother.  We started chatting back and forth and a blogging friendship grew.  If you are dealing with grief, you will appreciate her transparency.

Through our chats, Jen asked me to consider doing a guest post of how I personally deal/dealt with life's hurts and disappointments.  I had never done anything like that, but I agreed, and if you would like to check it out, it is here.

As posted on It's a Wonderful Life 10/3/12

Hey there! I am Frances from Notions from Nonny.  I came across Jen’s blog a few months ago and I have really enjoyed reading her blog.  Lately, we have corresponded here and there talking about dealing with hurt and grief.  I am honored that Jen asked me to write of my experiences.  This is definitely a reader’s digest version and a lot of gory details were left out.  I just more anything, want to bare my heart, and encourage someone that you can make it.   You can go through a horrible trial and come out on the other side whole and stronger than before.

The sun was brightly shining, beautiful and cloudless, and life was good.  With a lovely family, I was very blessed.  I was married to my high school sweetheart, a wonderful husband of 22 years, with three precious boys; a daughter in law also came during this time, and soon thereafter a grandbaby.  I had an ideal situation, with what some would call a perfect life.  I couldn’t ask for anything more.  Oh believe me, as a family we had our share of trials, but we would bounce right back, and things were great again.  I never anticipated what the future would hold.  Whoever does?

The day came when our family began the trial of our life.  First, tragedy struck our family in the form of cancer.  My healthy, vibrant father-in-law was diagnosed with incurable prostate cancer.  We bound together and started praying.  We knew we served a prayer answering God, but as time continued, my foundation of life was literally shaken.  The sun that was shining soon became obscured by dark, black storm clouds.  I was dealt one major trial after another.  They came in as rolling waves.  Just when I thought it couldn’t get worse, a roaring wave of tragedy came, as each one of my family members held on for dear life. There was not one of us that were not affected.  I would stand back up because I was fighter, but to be knocked back down again.  The weight I was carrying was becoming so heavy, and my very existence was questioning if I could ever survive this storm. 

I know the days of dark despair, where you are so cold inside, even though the sun is shining.  Or the sleepless nights, where you are constantly tormented in your dreams, praying for any bit of sleep to keep your sanity.  The gut wrenching times where you have no clue what the outcome is going to be, whether you’re going to receive your miracle, or just have to deal with a devastating outcome.  I know the feeling of desperation for a child that is struggling through life, and the grief of losing someone you love.  I know heart breaking experience of losing something so precious, something that you have poured your life into, only to never regain it again.   Yet, I look back now and see how far I have come.  How did I come so far? How did I survive the most horrible two years of my life?  I believe there are three main reasons why I made it through to the other side of the storm, to where the sun was shining again.

One: I relied on God for my strength and direction.  If I hadn’t relied on God, who knows what is best for me, I would be in a sorry state.  His word and presence gave me the courage to take another step when I didn’t think I could.  Oh, and his miracles! I cannot go without mentioning the miracles.  In the middle of the storm, God would give my family miracles that would give us a ray of hope to continue.  He moved mountains that man doubted could be moved, but my God moved them and I will forever be thankful.  The book of Psalms was also a blessing to me during my darks times.  Even now, when I am discouraged, I go back to Psalms and his many promises.  If you do what it is right, God will fight your battle for you.  I know he will, because he did it for me.

Two: I sought counsel with someone wiser than I.  My pastor was a huge help through the storm.  I realized that my thinking was not the best, and I needed another voice to lead and direct.   I submitted myself to him, knowing he would give me the right advice.  It was amazing how he always had the right thing to say, almost as if he saw my heart.  Sometimes it hurt, but in the long run, I am a much better and stronger person. 

Three: I depended heavily on friends and family.  I am so blessed with an awesome family.  Not only do I have my parents and sister, but my husband has a large family.  We are all very close and lean on one another.  We’re always encouraging each other and we’re just great friends.  I will never forget the text messages or phone calls of encouragement or the many hours that my family would just listen.    Even when I wanted to shut everyone out, they were there just to let me know everything would be okay.  Just hold on.  There were even times when they struggled and it was helpful for me to give back, because it would take my mind off my problems.  There were also countless friends that did the same.  They could have walked away because it was some very dark times, but we had great friends that stood by us.  Those are friends that are precious and I thank God everyday for them. 

The sun is shining again for my family, but as my pastor always says, “You are either going into a storm, you are in a storm, or you are leaving storm”.   I thank God everyday that I made it out of this storm with my faith and family intact.  It was not my doing, it was God’s.  I will forever be thankful that he helped me through this.    If you are reading this, and are going through a trial of your life, you can’t do it alone.  Find God, find someone to counsel with, and find a friend or family member you can trust.  Surround yourself with strong and positive people.  That is the key for when you are struggling, and when you come through this, you will be a stronger person.  The scars will eventually heal and your testimony will be a blessing to someone else in need.    
"Ignore the rushing waters.....ignore everything that tries to pull you under or knock your feet out, or obscures your view. Plant your feet on a solid rock."

I leave you with my favorite quote:

 She stood in the storm, and when the wind did not blow her way, she adjusted her sails.” 

I now hold my head high and trust God to lead and direct my path, for he never fails.  And if another storm comes, I know what I have come through and how strong I can be.  Just hold on….. The sun will shine again.

Have a blessed day!


  1. Your post was both beautiful AND encouraging! Thank you for being willing to share with us!

  2. What a beautiful testimony of God's faithfulness. thank you for sharing it with us.

  3. Hi there! I'll reply on your blog - I attend Bro. Joel Pace's church!

  4. Ohhh, I just remembered one connection in Dallas! When I was looking for my second vehicle, my Pastor referred me to Ken Kendrick and he sold it to me.

  5. Thank you for sharing your testimony and for being a great example of strength. I do appreciate you! =)

  6. Wow! Such an awesome post Nonny. I can identify so much with what you have expressed. Our faith in God certainly helps us along the way. My favourite Psalm is Psalm 23. It lifts my spirit so much. Guess what? Your favourite quote is also one of my favourite quotes! Keep on keeping on and my best wishes to you and your family.

  7. Such a beautiful post. It’s easy to say, “give your cares to the Lord and trust Him” when everything in life seems to be going well. Trusting God regardless of how scary the situation may seem allow us to be placed in a position where we seek the Lord’s presence, provisions, guidance and promises.


  8. Thanks so much for sharing this! You've blessed me today, and I want to be that strong through my own trials and storms. Thanks for the reminders to keep my eyes on Him and truth Him when I doubt his trustworthiness. <3



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